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Greenwood city, county workers not required to wear masks at work

While cities and counties debate whether to mandate the wearing of face masks within its jurisdictions, government workers are not wearing masks while at work.

In a walk through the city building as well as the Greenwood County Courthouse, only a handful of workers are wearing masks. Neither the city nor county governments require its employees to wear masks.

“We are constantly monitoring the effectiveness of our measures and thus far they have been working,” Greenwood County Manager Toby Chappell said in an email. “If we see the need to employ other methods, we will do so.”

Chappell said that the county has taken precautions in the Greenwood County Courthouse by placing hand sanitizer at the entrance, making traffic one way, placing stations outside of offices with social distancing markers and adding sneeze guards in offices.

Arrows along the floor direct the flow of traffic throughout the courthouse in a circular direction.

The city building, which contains fewer offices than the courthouse, had few if any employees wearing masks.

“Our offices are set up for social distancing,” Greenwood City Manager Julie Wilkie said in an email. “The majority of our staff in City Hall has individual offices, those that are in shared spaces are more than six feet apart.”

Wilkie said the building is sanitized with a fogger once a week and high touch surfaces are wiped down twice a day. She also said hand sanitizer stations are located throughout the building along with signage encouraging people to stay 6 feet apart.

“We have also installed protective glass in all areas of City Hall where the public interacts with staff,” Wilkie said.

On Wednesday, the city along with Uptown Greenwood and Greenwood SC Chamber of Commerce distributed masks and the Greenwood Business Pledge to businesses around Uptown. The pledge asks businesses to sanitize frequently, promote social distancing, encourage face coverings, monitor employee health and limit capacity.

“We will be encouraging the public to wear face masks just like all others taking the Greenwood Business Pledge,” Wilkie said. “Unfortunately, we do not have the capacity to ‘police’ and enforce people coming in and out of the building to ensure they are in compliance.”

Wilkie said that all members of city staff have been offered personal protective equipment, including masks and gloves.

Contact staff writer James Hicks at jhicks@indexjournal.com or on Twitter @jameshicks3.

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To get tested, contact your health care provider or a local hospital, such as Self Regional Medical Center or Abbeville Area Medical Center. You may also attend a free testing clinic. Here are some that are currently planned:

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As the Lakelands and the country respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic, which has led to state and national emergency declarations, it is vital for everyone to have up-to-date information about the virus and its spread. As such, we're providing free access to all of our COVID-19 coverage, which is available on this page.

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